Southern California Beaches

Top Selected Products and Reviews

"Best Guide Book for Exploring the CA Coast" - by Joe
This is a great guide! I was born and raised in Southern CA where I spent countless hours at the beaches as a young person and adult. I received this book as a gift and have been thrilled. The book contains detailed and accurate maps of the entire southern California coastline, together with web sites and phone numbers of parks and other area resources. It has given us a chance to go to beaches we would not have otherwise, and lists numerous beach access points we did not even know existed. (It appears to contain a list of every single public access point along this stretch of the coast.) A huge bonus is that the book provides a ton of useful and interesting coastal information that will help me teach my girls about the natural coastal environment as we enjoy the beach. It ... full review
"A Staple for Southern California Divers" - by Chris Kenst (California)
A Diver's Guide to Southern California's Best Beach Dives is an excellent reference for anyone diving in Southern California, regardless of your skill or number of dives. Kim and Dale Sheckler have been diving in SoCal for 20+ years so they are able to offer concise and accurate information on all the major dive sites from Ventura to San Diego.

Most of the information available in this book is also available online but unless you print out the dive briefings or get data reception on every beach this book offers the same depth of information in a portable format. There is a great matrix in the beginning of the book that rates all dive sites for visibility, ease of access, ability to hunt, etc. Sites are organized like a traditional dive briefing with some offering underwater maps, tips on photography, while other dive sites have photos and all have a brief ... full review
"Equally great for tidepooling or casual reading" - by William Chamberlin (Fullerton, CA USA)
This book remains a classic reference for identification of tidepool organisms in southern California. Unlike many field guides, this one devotes 30 or more pages to basic oceanography (tides, currents, waves, water chemistry, etc) as it affects tidepool organisms. Other field guides include a greater number of color photos and line drawings but Hinton gives more help on identifying organisms and more explanation of their behaviors and ecological roles. He also includes a number of very entertaining anecdotes which make this book fun to read when the weather and tide aren't right for tidepooling.
"Modern renderings of California" - by Blue in Washington (Barry Ballow) (Washington, DC United States)
This is a compendium of modern/contemporary landscape painting (mostly) with an emphasis on the pretty and the beautiful. In that respect, it will be of interest to many part-time painters, hobbyists, etc. who are lucky enough to live in California and have access to its wonderful geography. The book's illustrations are very well presented--clear, saturated color, etc.
"Archaeological Best" - by Scott Crull (Woodland, CA USA)
I had contacted the author prior to buying the book - to use any pictures needed for my archaeology report on a site I was working. I couldn't believe the treasure I found inside. Those pictures allowed me to continue my research direction & I was able to reduce the age of my site from c.1900-1940 to c.1900-1927 & have the proof to back those dates up. I applaud Chris for this book & hope to obtain other copies for friends & associates, in the future.
"Great guid" - by Richard Wirtz (Knoxville, TN USA)
I was looking specifically for a book that would tell me where the good body-surfing is. This book has all kinds of good information, including that kind. The authors are not afraid to state their opinions. We'll see how reliable they are. But I am impressed.
"It's A Great Book" - by Brian W. Mooberry
This is one of the two best books written about the Beach Boys. I would say that The Beach Boys and the California Myth is a better book, but many readers will disagree with that and say that this is the best Beach Boy book. The reason that I have trouble with this book is becasue I grew up in the 50's and 60's and I did't need some one trying to tell about what life was like during those days. Too much time is spent tell about the development of the Hula Hoop, Barby and Kens Dolls, and other late 50's and 60's events. Too much time was spent on the genelogy of The Wilson Family. Even though I did enjoy some of it since I was born and raise in the area of Kansas that the Wislons came from. This book really ... full review
"Review of California" - by evan
This is such a great book! It features plenty of beautiful photos and makes you feel like you're actually there. It gives of you an overview of the diverse biomes that California has to offer. There's desert, mountain, ocean, and rain forest. If you're a visual learner, like me, and want to learn all there is to know about California, I'd recommend this book.
"Fun AND beautiful" - by Beach maven (San Diego, CA)
I found "Beyond the Beach Blanket" a beautiful and easy to use field guide -- terrific photos and really interesting material. It contains much more information than the average field guide -- a lot of fun facts and cool stories about the lifecycles of beach creatures. It really covers a lot of different types of animals too -- clams and other shells, plus tidepool animals like sea urchins, plus what the book calls "near shore creatures" like fish and sharks, plus marine mammals AND shore birds. It's an all in one guide for the beach.
"Sexy and Sweet" - by Honolulubelle (Hawaii)
Favorite Quotes:

That aghast expression would make any man take off, even as he’d briefly hoped—like an idiot—that the previous hours had all been a teenage-style wet dream followed by the kind of nightmare where you had to take a test buck naked in a language you’d never studied.

I’m your time and place, Jojo. I’m your person to share things with, sad and happy and all that’s in between.

My Review:

This installment was fast-paced, scorching the sheets sexy, a quick and easy read, and such a pleasant way to spend the part of the afternoon. I enjoyed Jojo and Connor as a couple, the instalove trope worked perfectly for them as they had more natural chemistry than they knew what to do with. Their story moved along at a brisk pace yet even had time for brief glimpses of the previous pairings from books one and two. The Heartbreak Hotel’s reputation for ... full review
"Moving story collection" - by Wanda B. Red (Boston, MA)
These thirteen linked and evocative stories are set in Newport Beach, California, a Southern California landscape that is at once breathtakingly gorgeous -- the palm trees, the water, the yachts, the sand, the twinkling lights -- and emotionally bereft. Like Victoria Patterson, an exciting new fictional voice, I grew up here too, though many years ago. I went to the same high school as Rosie, perhaps the most central of several repeating characters, and felt both the excitement and the danger of coming of age in a place so beautiful yet so brutal, where youth and beauty alone are the coin of the realm for a young woman.

But I didn't expect to like these stories as much as I did, because it's too easy to mock this Eden and to expose its blindnesses and hypocrisies. Think "The OC." From publishers' descriptions of the book, that was what I was fearing. ... full review
"Great collection of photos from legendary punk rock engineer/producer Spot" - by Greg67 (beaverton, oregon United States)
Great collection of photos from legendary punk rock engineer/producer Spot. Captures the vibe and energy that was the South Bay/LA in the late 70's and early 80's. Plenty of punk rock and beach culture along with skateboarding but also includes all the roller skating going on at the time. If you are interested in youth culture from the 70's and 80's, then this book is a must have.
"Beauty in Boundariesat the Beach" - by Margaret McWilliams
Beach Boundaries: Fences and Gates of Southern California is a terrific book. I just finished reading it, and I have to tell you what a tonic it was to stroll through those beautiful photographs and words that bring our delightful beach area to life. The colorful pages capture our California beach experience perfectly. I can't thank the authors enough for creating this book and its refreshing aura of the beauty in our lives. I can hardly wait for their next one. Beach Boundaries is clearly a gift that I will be sending to friends.